Pegasus: Understanding the super spy that controls your phone

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Recently, media organisations across the world published a series of reports exposing Pegasus, a spyware developed by NSO Group in Israel. They found that governments have been using Pegasus to spy on their own journalists, activists and opposition leaders. Amnesty International’s forensic team has confirmed these findings. After mounting global and national pressure, the NSO has temporarily blocked several of its government clients from using its spyware.

Earlier in 2019, researchers from the University of Toronto had contacted lawyers and activists from the Bhima Koregaon case, alerting them to the presence of Pegasus on their phones. Among the 300 phones suspected to be infiltrated in India, forty belong to journalists. The Supreme Court will be hearing a plea from senior journalists against the hack.

On this episode of The Suno India Show, reporter Suryatapa Mukherjee spoke to Anushka Jain, associate counsel of Surveillance and Transparency at the Internet Freedom Foundation. This is a deep dive on what makes Pegasus special, whether it is accommodated by our laws on surveillance, and how it is affecting Indian citizens.

Additional reading:

NSO Group: What we know about the secretive company behind the Pegasus spy software.
Indian Activists, Lawyers Were ‘Targeted’ Using Israeli Spyware Pegasus

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